Annual Operation Patriot motorcycle parade in Rochester in honor 9/11
Rochester, New York – On Saturday, motorcycles lined up at Ontario Beach Park for the 21st annual “Let’s Roll” tribute ride in remembrance of 9/11.
The motorcycle-only ride is one of the largest parade-style rides in New York State and is organized by Operation Patriot.
“Last year we did it from the beach here and it was so successful that we had a lot of people asking to do it again,” said Neil Flood, law enforcement coordinator for Operation Patriot. “So we decided to do it again. And as you can see by the turnout, we have a few motorcycles here.”
But there were a little more than a few. “It’s growing every year,” Flood said. “I actually think this year will be bigger than last year and I thought last year was huge.”
It was a hard record to beat after last year’s parade with over 800 motorcycles, but somehow they are doing it. Flood was optimistic about this year’s turnout. “I think we’re getting pretty close to that this year,” he said. “So we’re going to be in that range.”
This year riders went through Spencerport before heading back to the beach. The ride is nearly 55 miles total and has become an important way for riders to honor 9/11 and show their respect for law enforcement. “The original mission of Operation Patriot was to support fire, police, and military,” Flood said. “So I just think it’s morphed into a continual support and the motorcycle community really supports us.”
According to Flood, the support is strong, as bikers continue to show up in large numbers to participate in the parade and pay tribute. “The motorcycle community continues to ask us, ‘would you do it again, would you do it again next year,’ and here we are,” he said.